T-minus 16 hours and counting!

Electronics are charging, bags are packed to the brim, hair cuts and mani-pedi appointments done and now we sit and watch the clock, tick tock tick tock.

Image The first day of our vacation will consist of a 3 hour check in at the school, a five hour wait at the airport, and an 8 hour flight across the POND, then a full day awaits us in London with tours and orientation before we can crash.  

Excited to be on our way!

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What if it Was?

Mayan CalendarRain drops percuss the tin roof of my home as the white lights twinkle in rhythm on my Christmas tree.  Cold gusts of wind whip the leaves in the front yard in spirals and the branches quiver and and weep as the rain hums me into lethargic intermittent slumber. Wrapped in a warm quilt with caramel mocha steaming a comforting aroma to waft around my dreams, I doze in and out of the re-runs on Netflix.

A thought occurred to me.  What if today was the last day? What would my last day on the planet look like?

I have often had thoughts like these.  Usually in the form of what if I only had a year, two weeks, two days to live? What would I do with my time on earth?  Grandiose ideas of travel or missionary work crowd my imagination in times like these.  But rarely does the end come with an announced expiration date.  More often than not, the end comes suddenly to those not expecting it.  Even those with terminal illnesses who are given a “heads up” rarely GO… without fighting for one more breath, one more moment, one more prayer or hope for another second with loved ones.  It is in our nature to grasp for life.

What if they Mayans are right and today is the last day we have?  What was your day like?  What did you do today?  If the world explodes and you wake up in your next life, what would be the story of your last day on planet earth?

My last day story is something like this…

I woke up and made a cup of coffee, turned on the Christmas tree and read a few blogs and status updates on facebook.  I greeted my son when he came upstairs and asked if I would drive him to the school to turn in some last minute assignments.  I drove him to school, read a book while I waited for him, took him to breakfast, came home and wrapped some Christmas presents, did the dishes and a load of laundry, searched the closets for a scarf I could not find, reclined on the couch and turned on Netflix while I surfed the internet, then curled into a ball under a colorful quilt and intermittently dozed to the accompaniment of the rain while sipping another coffee.

View from my couch

Welcome to my couch. This is what I see between my lashes as I doze in and out.

Not the high minded missionary work or reaching out to lost ones that I had planned.  Today, though much needed day off that it is, holds no miraculous epiphanies, no earth shattering revelations, no uncovering of hidden mysteries.  It is just a lazy day embraced in the warmth of love and home.  Honestly, I can think of no better way to spend my last day on earth.  Wrapped in the warmth of love and peace, listening to the sounds of God’s whispering showers.

I think I will call my mom, my sister, my best friends.  I will hug and kiss my children then I will stop by the jungle to hail my blue monkeys, write in my stories, and I will hypothetically end this existence in harmony with the call God has birthed in me.

What if it was the end? What does your last day on the planet look like?

Cheerio!

Sepia London

The London trip quickly approaches and I am ready to pop!  I’ve never been out of the country before (unless you count Juarez, Mexico or flying over Canada to get to Alaska and I don’t count that), so I am ready to cross the pond!

I cannot wait to take a train to Stonehenge and look over the country side that is the home of so many of my favorite books.  I wish I could ride a horse, but me thinks it will be too cold for that. I am taking an empty journal, Netbook, and documentary app in my camera phone. Soaking in all of the writing fodder to last me a couple of years, I plan to breathe it all in and make it a part of me. Misty London

I am a little worried about getting all I need into that 50lb weight limit for the luggage. I plan to put all heavy items in my carry-on.  Any weight saving tips you have are appreciated.

My daughter wants me to be to be sure and let you all know that a ferocious dog (very like a werewolf), a black belt in Karate, and her boyfriend (see picture below) will be house sitting with her while I am gone, so criminals beware! We are well protected, not to mention, the TV is broke, there are no valuables in the house, and everything we own could be described as garage sale eclectic.

Dayla's new boyfriend.  Don't mess with this peach! (She is gonna kill me for this! LOL)

Dayla’s new boyfriend. Don’t mess with this peach! (She is gonna kill me for this! LOL)

So “Cheerio” and “I say ol’ chap”, and “God save the Queen.”  I will be brushing up on my Brittish in the next few weeks.  What about travel tips? Any travelers out there that have specific tips to make our trip more hassle free?  Scoop!

London

Be a Doer not a Don’t-er

There is a man in my life that has been there for me through thick and thin.  As a child he was my playmate, big brother, aggravation, torturer, and friend.

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Look who is dead in the grass and who is holding the gun!

When I was sixteen and my parents divorced, he was there to support me. We traveled in a singing group with my aunt and her family the summer it all fell apart.  He was a rock for me. He sang and played at my wedding. Part of why we bonded was that we both love to sing for Jesus. He would write the songs and push me to sing higher, lower, or better.  He spent hours over a keyboard writing songs and making tracks for them so I could make an album.

He is still in the studio, making music!

He is still in the studio, making music!

Then he spent more hours in the studio, mixing, singing back up and adding effects.  He never asked for payment.  He would just say “When you make it big, you can pay me.”  I honestly felt like he thought I could do it. When my marriage began to fail, he gave me sage wisdom and support through it, while encouraging me to stand in my faith without wavering. When I found an outlet for my grief and pain and decided to write a curriculum to help children of divorce and start a non profit ministry, he called me to California and promoted my vision alongside his and Connie’s ministry. www.heartworkvillage.com www.conniebrothers.com He has always been there for me.  I love him, dearly.  So, now, I introduce to you the writings of my uncle and friend, Roger Brothers. The following was posted on Facebook 12-8-12.

I want to say that it is totally your business what you do as a parent, as long as it’s not abusive in any way.. TOTALLY. But as a Christian, you have to decide what club you want to belong to and raise your kids in. The “Don’t” club, or the “Do” club. If you raise them in the don’t club….don’t do this….Christians don’t do that…..they will grow up to resent Christianity. Instead, we taught our kids (which are all in the ministry) to be a member of the “DO” club. Remember, the Apostle Paul said “All things are lawful, but not all things are expedient.” Teach your kids the things that are expedient, and they will love you for it, and love the church, and serve Christ.

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He is in there, can you find him? Look under the Santa hat.

No one here was raised any stricter than I was. I was raised in the “Don’t” club. I was taught that it was a sin to go to football games, movies, baseball, basketball. go bowling, to the fair, rodeo, and anywhere else that was considered fun. One of the biggest fights me and my Dad had was when, at 16, he would not let me go to the Beaumont Fair. I was not allowed to participate in sports, play in the band, dress out for P.E., etc. etc. I earned my P.E. credits washing jockstraps. I was ridiculed, called names, and thought to be a weirdo. ANYONE who went to school with me knows I was a miserable, wretched outcast until about the 11th grade when I began to change things. 2 Weeks after I graduated, I left for Louisiana. Anything to get out of the don’t club.

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Roger loves his grandbabies.

So, believe me when I say, you had better not teach your kids to be members of the don’t club. Thank God, I have come out of all that legalism, and have raised my kids differently. Be a do-er, not a don’t-er! Love! Roger and Connie Roger and Connie Brothers currently live in Texas where they pastor 123 Church.  They have touched lives over many years across the nation.  Check out Brothers Family Ministries at http://www.ConnieBrothers. com